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TravelNLivng It is not a one – size – fits all industry | Richa Fotedar, Marketing & Branding Director

Primary motivator to pursue your professional goals in the travel and tourism sector? For me, foraying into the space of travel as a professional was simply about aligning my passion with my skill sets. I truly believe, travel is a process of continued learning. While my mother, has always been the inspiration, I wish to pave my own path as an entrepreneur. Over the course of time, I realized there is not one way to be a travel professional. In this widely collaborative world, one can look at this industry with fresh eyes. There are opportunites galore. It is not a one-size-fits-all industry. You can be selective and at this moment in time really create your own identity due to the technological advances and demands of the coming generations. An observation about the industry, either a challenge or an opportunity? One such particular observation that has posed as both an opportunity as well as a challenge would be the rapidly evolving perception of the term “luxury travel” and “experiential travel” among the travelers. Often influenced by the plethora of images and information found in the web world today, travel advisors are compelled to follow suit with the changing perceptions of travel in the mind of the consumer. Luxury travel is subjective. For one traveller, it could be a private multimillion-dollar cruise around the Arctic on a famous yacht, while for another, it could be the reassurance of having their dietary requirements automatically catered for throughout their entire holiday. Curating something that appeals to them on a specific, personal level that goes above a traveler’s “norms” is key to the next chapter of luxury travel and experiences. Vision for the business? Future or vision for me would be to continue to carve a niche in unique and immersive experiences for the evolved travelers. Technology has been a substantial game changer. Comment. For the brick and mortar travel agents, technology has definitely been impactful, both negatively and positively. Having to constantly educate the ‘know it all’ audience in this field of self proclaimed experts, heavy promotions from online websites and travel influencers can be daunting. However, in my case, technology has been a boon. Not only has it allowed me to reach out to the millennial and bring in the second generation of clientele in my already existing networks – my personal investment in traveling the world every available time has allowed me to influence the audience across various social media platforms who can then reach out to the operations vertical of the company, book their itineraries, experiences and holidays. Gen Nxt Thought? Traveling is a heavy investment for any individual. If travelers genuinely value their time, money and experiences, they will be able to differentiate between the DIY online sites and authentic travel experts and masters in their field. Travel planners will soon be regarded as exclusive service providers and experts.]]>